Monday, August 25, 2014

Kusuma Cooray brings Mughlai specialties to KCC

In anticipation of the opening of the newly renovated Mughal Suite at Shangri La, the estate of tobacco heiress Doris Duke, University of Hawaii’s Culinary Institute of the Pacific at Kapiolani Community College and Shangri La will present a series of fall public programs highlighting Mughlai cuisine.

Ka ‘Ikena Laua’e, the fine dining restaurant on the KCC campus, will present a special lunch menu featuring Mughlai cuisine created and prepared by KCC Professor of Culinary Studies and former Doris Duke corporate chef Kusuma Cooray and KCC culinary students.

Mughlai cuisine is a style of cooking developed by the imperial kitchens of the Muslim Mughal Empire. It represents the cooking styles of North India, Pakistan and Hyderabad.

Reservations are being taken for the lunch being offered Sept. 16 through 19, with seatings at 11 a.m., 11:30 a.m. and noon each day. At $22.95 per person, the lunch will feature:

Appetizer course: Mughlai Murgh (braised chicken with raisins and almonds), curried dal, pineapple chutney, raita and pratha.

Entrée: Shahjahani Biriyani (rice and lamb with saffron, aromatic spices and yogurt), Rogan Josh (curried lamb), vegetables, tomato chutney and pappadams.

Dessert: A Mughlai fantasy and choice of coffee or tea.

Drink: Assorted fruit juices and lassi.

Courtesy University of Hawaii Press
Chef Kusuma Cooray will be cooking up Mughlai cuisine at Kapiolani Community College.

Other related events:

Aug. 25 to Dec. 19
South Asian Cuisine exhibition: A display featuring South Asian recipes prepared for Doris Duke by chef Kusuma Cooray will be on view at the Kapiolani Community College Library, along with materials from the Shangri La Historical Archives. Admission is free.

Oct. 6
Mughal cuisine lecture and Taj chefs demonstration: Executive chef Hemant Oberoi and two master chefs from Mumbai’s Taj Hotel chain will present a Mughal cuisine cooking demonstration and tasting in the Culinary Institute of the Pacific auditorium, from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. in the Ohia Building 118. Seating is limited and admission is free. Co-sponsored by Shangri La, Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art.

The late Doris Duke collected Islamic art over 60 years, forming a collection of about 2,500 objects, many of which are embedded into the structure of Shangri La, including Iranian ceramic tile panels, carved and painted ceilings from Morocco, jalis (perforated screen) doors and windows, and textiles and carpets.

It was her wish that Shangri La be maintained as a center for Islamic arts and culture, kept open for public visits and educational programs.
Ka ‘Ikena Laua’e is in the Ohelo Building, 2nd floor, at KCC. Call 734-9499 for reservations.

Nadine Kam is Style Editor and staff restaurant critic at the Honolulu Star-Advertiser; her coverage in print on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Contact her via email at and follow her on Twitter, Instagram and Rebel Mouse.

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